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World Creation

Lesson 2 in Unreal Environments

Lesson Information

In this lesson, you will build a new level in Unreal Engine. Utilizing various sculpting, set dressing and lighting techniques, your level will progress from a completely flat plane to a beautifully laid out vista. 

Lay the Groundwork

Create a new level, with its own skydome and lighting. This will be the basis of your level going forward.

Moving Mountains

Duplicate the basic level you created earlier, and create a few different versions. In each, try experimenting with the various sculpting tools to create land formations. Pay attention to your landmasses, and make sure they aren't becoming unrealistic. When in doubt, consult your references.

The Joy of Painting

Paint some of the various environment layers into your scene. You can also try adding roads or water for an extra challenge. Don't worry too much about polishing or adding props to your scene. Now is the time for experimenting. 

Make It Pretty

Choose your favorite of the landscapes you created in earlier exercises, save a backup copy, and then dress the scene with props so it looks good from a single camera angle. 

Full Immersion

Add set dressing to your scene in all directions. Make sure to enter first-person mode and walk around your scene. Seeing things from human scale might expose new problems.

Share Your Work

Upload an image of your environment using the 'Upload Homework' button above, so your instructor and fellow students can see your progress!


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When you are sculpting how do you turn off the yellow landscape selection outline. I noticed in the demonstration it does not have it on.
Another question i have when i am zooming in there is a shadow over the bottom part of the screen the closer I get. Any ideas how to fix this? The shadow moves as if the camera is casting the shadow its very strange behavior.

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Which brushify pack are we supposed to buy if we want to follow along? Example: to load the MI_landscape material? Is that in all brushify packs? The workflow being proposed looks interesting and valid but the course should have been called "How to use Brushify in Unreal".

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It's still useful yeah, but indeed it urges you to become a loyal Brushify customer, which is a bit annoying. No idea what Mr. Johnson is on about. The description pasted here makes no mention of "this is a brushify course". The Assets included are appreciated but there are a lot of complaints in the comments for a good reason. Tutorials, especially paid ones, should strive for a more open flow of learning and the instructor should know that, too. I've heard "Brushify" more often than "environment", "unreal" and many other keywords now. It's annoying for sure.

Seriously? Let me just remind you what the description of the course was:
Create beautiful, lifelike worlds in Unreal Engine 4 under the guidance of Joe Garth, one of the industry's top realtime artists. Having worked on projects such as Quixel's Rebirth and Crysis, Joe will teach you everything you need to know to get started with environments in Unreal.
What Joe covers is an enormous amount of learning to do with Unreal Engine. He does show you how to use the engine and what makes it work so well. Yes it is Brushify heavy but that is because the assets are extremely useful for Environment Creation, which is literally what the course is called and what is in the description. So maybe you should read the description before buying and then complaining its not what you thought it is.

Hello everyone,
Is it possible to change the brush shape to create elevations with a squared shape?
One more question, when I am sculpting and smoothing the terrain I could see a bunch of rocks floating. I think it is because I am modifying the surface but is it possible to fix that?
Thanks in advance,

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Yes. Same problem here.Actually it happens randomly and it's not one lecture in particular.That's my experience since I bought the course two weeks ago.First I thought that it happened because of the browser I am using but I tried different browsers and they all give the same error.So it's good to hear that I am not the only one.


Lesson Plan